5 Golden Rules for Developers: Preparing Web and Mobile Apps for the Biggest Holiday Shopping Season Yet
November 08, 2018

Eran Kinsbruner
Perfecto

Share this

There's no place like the web and smartphones for the holidays. With the biggest shopping season of the year quickly approaching, retailers are gearing up to experience the most traffic their online platforms (web, mobile, IoT) have ever seen. According to Deloitte's 2018 holiday survey, nearly 60 percent of total holiday shopping is expected to happen online this year, with an added two-thirds looking to do their research on the web.

With the ghosts of Black Friday and Cyber Monday past constantly on their mind, developers across organizations are working around the clock to avoid experiencing performance and capacity issues. While a little glitch in the payment processing page or slow-loading sites may not seem like a big deal to most, it's losing retailers big money. During Prime Day this summer, Amazon experienced one hour of downtime, which is estimated to have cost the ecommerce giant anywhere from $72 million to $99 million dollars.

To avoid missing out on millions this holiday season, below are the top five ways developers can keep their apps and websites up and running without a hitch.

1. Get ahead of those "bah, hum(BUGS)"

As the saying goes, the early bird gets the worm – or in this case, the bug. To get ahead of common glitches, continuous testing ahead of – and throughout – the holidays can help to minimize downtime, poor app performance and less-than-optimal user experiences when the sales are the sweetest.

Quick tip: Continuously run all different types of tests (performance, user experience, accessibility and security) as part of the continuous testing workflow against a robust production environment.

2. Use gift guides to inform testing strategies

While the latest smartphones, tablets, laptops and smart watches are at the top of many consumers' wish lists this holiday season, it's important to remember that there are already many early-adopters who will be using these devices – and their new operating systems (OS) – to do their shopping.

With Apple recently announcing nearly 10 new products and iOS 12, Google shipping out the brand-new Pixel 3 and Android Pi adoption soaring, teams must consider each and every device and operating system on the market when preparing their apps and websites for Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Quick tip: Make sure the testing lab is properly configured to cover a range of device and OS combinations to avoid glitches. Necessities for 2018 include the new iPhones (XS and XR), iPad and Google Pixel, as well as iOS 12 and Android Pi. However, don't forget legacy and -1 versions and devices that are still popular, such as iPad 2 on iOS9.3.5 and iPhone 5C on iOS10.3.3.

3. Help "Friends and Family" find the best deals

Popular social media sites like Facebook and Instagram are increasingly becoming popular platforms for not only sharing great deals – but also acting on them. With features like in-app browsers built into mobile applications, more and more users are making purchases directly from their favorite vendors without leaving social media. This means vendors must make sure their sites are compatible with Instagram and Facebook's dimensions.

Quick tip: Third party apps and APIs are often major contributors to overall web traffic. Ensure websites are operating accurately with in-app purchases by including hybrid-like apps such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and others as part of your test automation at scale both from a visual standpoint as well as from a functional one.

4. Redefine window shopping

The growing move towards progressive web apps (PWAs) to develop more engaging user experiences is perhaps one of the biggest changes for developers this holiday season. Simply put, PWAs are web apps that are installable and run outside the typical browser window to deliver an immersive and consistent user experience. According to a recent survey from Perfecto, 73 percent of respondents either plan to add or look into PWAs for their sites in the next year, so it's no secret why top retailers like eBay are exploring them too.

Quick tip: With PWAs come new, rich engagement capabilities including audio, image and location-based inputs, as well as push notifications. Automating PWA testing can help to simplify this process and deliver flawless user experiences in no time with the holidays just around the corner.

Watch those doorbuster deals

Doorbuster deals – especially when offered hourly or daily – result in major traffic increases, which can ultimately lead to glitches and sluggish loading times. Ongoing monitoring can help to identify production hiccups that may hurt a retailer's bottom line during its busiest days of the year.

Quick tip: Half the battle in development is knowing when and where something has gone wrong. Invest in tools that include robust, quality dashboards with smart insights for fast feedback to accelerate issues response. At the end of the day, the retailers that perform continuous testing and continuous monitoring in production are often the ones that come out on top during the holidays.

Eran Kinsbruner is Chief Evangelist at Perfecto
Share this

The Latest

September 23, 2021

The Internet played a greater role than ever in supporting enterprise productivity over the past year-plus, as newly remote workers logged onto the job via residential links that, it turns out, left much to be desired in terms of enabling work ...

September 22, 2021

The world's appetite for cloud services has increased but now, more than 18 months since the beginning of the pandemic, organizations are assessing their cloud spend and trying to better understand the IT investments that were made under pressure. This is a huge challenge in and of itself, with the added complexity of embracing hybrid work ...

September 21, 2021

After a year of unprecedented challenges and change, tech pros responding to this year’s survey, IT Pro Day 2021 survey: Bring IT On from SolarWinds, report a positive perception of their roles and say they look forward to what lies ahead ...

September 20, 2021

One of the key performance indicators for IT Ops is MTTR (Mean-Time-To-Resolution). MTTR essentially measures the length of your incident management lifecycle: from detection; through assignment, triage and investigation; to remediation and resolution. IT Ops teams strive to shorten their incident management lifecycle and lower their MTTR, to meet their SLAs and maintain healthy infrastructures and services. But that's often easier said than done, with incident triage being a key factor in that challenge ...

September 16, 2021

Achieve more with less. How many of you feel that pressure — or, even worse, hear those words — trickle down from leadership? The reality is that overworked and under-resourced IT departments will only lead to chronic errors, missed deadlines and service assurance failures. After all, we're only human. So what are overburdened IT departments to do? Reduce the human factor. In a word: automate ...

September 15, 2021

On average, data innovators release twice as many products and increase employee productivity at double the rate of organizations with less mature data strategies, according to the State of Data Innovation report from Splunk ...

September 14, 2021

While 90% of respondents believe observability is important and strategic to their business — and 94% believe it to be strategic to their role — just 26% noted mature observability practices within their business, according to the 2021 Observability Forecast ...

September 13, 2021

Let's explore a few of the most prominent app success indicators and how app engineers can shift their development strategy to better meet the needs of today's app users ...

September 09, 2021

Business enterprises aiming at digital transformation or IT companies developing new software applications face challenges in developing eye-catching, robust, fast-loading, mobile-friendly, content-rich, and user-friendly software. However, with increased pressure to reduce costs and save time, business enterprises often give a short shrift to performance testing services ...

September 08, 2021

DevOps, SRE and other operations teams use observability solutions with AIOps to ingest and normalize data to get visibility into tech stacks from a centralized system, reduce noise and understand the data's context for quicker mean time to recovery (MTTR). With AI using these processes to produce actionable insights, teams are free to spend more time innovating and providing superior service assurance. Let's explore AI's role in ingestion and normalization, and then dive into correlation and deduplication too ...